Talks on Globalization and the Financial Crisis

I participated in a conversation for an upcoming TV Series: “The Butterfly Effect: A View of the Current Events.” Speaking with me about globalization, the financial crisis and its solution was Shlomi Buhana, Doctor of Economics at Bar-Ilan University.

Summary: For now there is no remedy for the global economy! And there won’t be until people accept the law of mankind’s balance, and the fact that humanity is a closed, global system with a harmonious connection between all of its parts. Gradually, either through crises and suffering or by becoming aware of this objective reality, people will reveal the fundamental law of the entire creation – “Love thy neighbor as thyself”!

Instead Of Seeking To Change Our Economic Systems, We Should Draw The Upper Light Of Correction

Does Charity Really Help Anyone?A question I received: It follows from the articles “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)” and “The Future Generation” that from the economic point of view, a Kabbalistic society is one of collectivism or communism, and that this is a necessary condition for everyone to receive the Torah and reveal the Creator, since only then can people stop thinking about themselves completely. Are there plans being made regarding new economic relations within the framework of the “Virtual State of Kabbalah?” Or is it still to early for it? Maybe we can implement transitional economic schemes and incorporate them into the modern capitalistic global economy? Generally speaking, how do you think the world economy will develop toward the ideal state?

My Answer: We should not change society and its institutions artificially, but rather we should correct the connections between us from egoistic to altruistic, by means of the Upper Light. The wisdom of Kabbalah explains how we can become similar to nature. Hence, by studying it we evoke upon us the Light of correction (the Surrounding Light, Ohr Makif) from above. It changes us, giving us the desires, thoughts, and forces to change everything in us and between us.

If we won’t change under the influence of the Light, but will instead change in whichever way we want to, then we’ll create a big mess all over again, like what happened with socialism in Russia and with the Kibbutzim in Israel. America is now compelled to nationalize businesses, and thus it is becoming socialist instead of capitalist. However, this is not the kind of socialism (or communism) that Kabbalah speaks about.

We, the members of the International Kabbalah Academy (the Bnei Baruch group), must do the following:

1. Provide ourselves with the necessary level of existence;
2. Correct ourselves by studying Kabbalah in the right environment (in our environment – see the article “The Freedom,” which explains what lies in our power of action).

The rest is done by the Light.

Our objective is to create a virtual society, which will serve as an example for the entire world.

Related Material:
Laitman.com Post: The Creator Will Become Revealed Inside the Unity of Our Virtual Meeting Space
Laitman.com Post: The Condition of Entering the Upper World Is Mutual Guarantee
Baal HaSulam Article: “Building the Future Society”
“Freedom of Will” – Lessons

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Religion’s Place In Our Lives

The Jewish Holidays Are Steps of Spiritual AscentA question I received: You say that Kabbalah has nothing in common with religion. Then why don’t Christians, Muslims, and followers of other belief systems have books on Kabbalah? Didn’t they all come from the Jewish religion?

My Answer: Baal HaSulam writes that all people may keep their respective religions even after reaching the final spiritual correction – adhesion with the Creator. This is a sign that the external actions bear absolutely no relation to spirituality, even though many people want to attribute this to them.

Kabbalah was developed by Abraham in Babylon 4000 years ago. The Jewish religion as we know it today appeared after the downfall of the Jewish people from the spiritual level 2000 years ago. Kabbalah then became concealed (when The Book of Zohar was written), and all that remained is a corporeal, egoistic “imprint” of the previous, spiritual way of life. This is how Judaism was formed in the way it exists today. Later Christianity and Islam also originated from it.

The Jewish religion divides into the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform branches. However, they differ only by having greater or smaller limits of observing the physical commandments. Hence they understand each other, are on the same side of egoism, and work to preserve it. In other words, the aim of one’s actions is inside a person, in the intention “for oneself.”

Kabbalah, on the other hand, summons people to observe the intention “for bestowal” (for one’s neighbor or for the Creator – that is, “outside oneself”), rather than to observe physical actions. It deals with the internality rather than the externality (see item 61 of the “Introduction to The Book of Zohar”). Hence Kabbalah is opposite to all religions.

This is why all the religions understand each other, but they consider Kabbalah absolutely unacceptable. Humanity will receive many more blows of fate before it will uncover the Creator’s Plan – to come close to Him through one’s intention.

Today Kabbalah is coming back into use, in order to correct man. We have to add it to our lives by beginning to correct ourselves. There is also a place for religion: to remain as a form of culture. This is because Kabbalah reveals the Creator and the Upper World to a person, leaving no room for suppositions about them. In this case, all that remains of religion are customs or traditions.

The reason why the religions are hostile toward Kabbalah is that Kabbalah gives every person an explanation of how to reveal the Creator, and in doing so it negates the need for religion. By giving people a personal connection with the Creator, Kabbalah strips the religious leaders of their power over the people.

Nevertheless, Kabbalists are in favor of preserving religion as a tradition or culture, as a nation’s framework and way of life. At the same time Kabbalah says that we should complement this way of life with the attainment of the Creator – which is the purpose of man’s creation and his perfect state.

Related Material:
Laitman.com Post: Religion Is a Cultural Tradition, Kabbalah Is the Method of Correction
Laitman.com Post: The Writings of the Last Generation
Kabbalahblog.info Post: 2 Ways to Achieve Perfection
Baal HaSulam Article: “The Essence of Religion and Its Purpose”

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Love, Marriage and Kabbalah

Perserverance Is the Key to SuccessQuestions I received on marriage, family, abortion, and jealousy:

Question: Today, when people’s life expectancy is so long, it seems unlikely for people to stay married just once. How can a couple live together for so long and stay happy?

My Answer: Everything depends only on your willingness to give in to each other.

Question: My husband is turning 45, and I would like to get him involved in Kabbalah. Where should I begin?

My Answer: Leave him alone! He lives with you, so I think that by now he has heard about Kabbalah many times. If he’s not interested in it, then stop trying to “educate” him. This big egoism of yours is only harming you. You should love your husband as a person. His time to grow spiritually will come when the time is right for him.

Question: Why is it that even though the Jerusalem Temple doesn’t exist today, it’s still forbidden for a Cohen to marry a divorced woman?

My Answer: This isn’t a question for me, because Kabbalah is the method of revealing the Creator to a person in this world. Kabbalah deals with one’s spiritual ascent, rather than one’s earthly well being.

Question: What is your opinion on abortion?

My Answer: I’m usually against it.

Question: Is jealousy just another manifestation of egoism?

My Answer: Jealousy is the same as greed.

Related Material:
Laitman.com Post: Abortion – How Does Kabbalah View It?
Laitman.com Post: Everybody Has Their Own Path
Kabbalah & Relationships

Faith, from the Primary Source Texts

How Does One Pay Maaser?Faith isn’t in the mind or a feeling, but a revelation within of the inner level of the soul’s essence, when its natural development is not distorted.
Rav Kook, Articles “HaRaiyah,” 70

All pessimism comes from uncertainty and doubt, when one thinks that our corporeal life is all that exists.
Rav Kook, Articles “HaRaiyah,” 69

There is one commandment: to attain the Creator’s greatness through examining the works of the great Kabbalists, in order to attain all the worlds and everything inhabiting them.
Rabbi Chaim Vital, Otzrot Haim, Chapter “Shmot,” p.57

The Financial Crisis Has Made Karl Marx Fashionable in Europe

The Remedy for the Global CrisisNews Report (translated from RB.ru): The global financial crisis, which has brought bankruptcies and countless job losses, has revived the European people’s interest in the ideas of Karl Marx, the founder of scientific communism. Book publishers in Berlin say that The Capital – Marx’s main work – is becoming a best-seller.

Recently the president of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, was seen reading this book. The German minister of finance, Peer Steinbrueck, said positive things about the book, and even the Pope in Rome praised it for its “deep analysis.” The longer the financial crisis continues, the more confused people become. They are asking, “Why did this happen to me?”

My Answer: I hope that they will come to the idea of Kabbalah just as fast. Universal equality, the idea that everyone deserves to receive what they need and are expected to give according to their natural skills, the idea of mutual guarantee and brotherhood – these are all good things, but only as the means and not the end. They should be a means to make us similar to the Creator, come closer to Him, and attain adhesion with Him. Otherwise these ideas – they way they are usually used – will once again lead to terror regimes and a world war.

Bringing the communist idea to life was a failure because in theory everything is nice and true, but it is impossible to transform man’s egoistic nature into altruism. (See Baal HaSulam’s newspaper “HaUma (The Nation)”). This is where the entire humanity will “stumble.” The crises and globalization will reveal to us that we are tightly interconnected, and hence we must observe the rule of “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” However, our nature won’t allow us to do this. We are ready to destroy one another and the entire world, because we can’t live in a mutual guarantee (See the article “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee).”

Hence, only the method of correcting human nature from egoism to altruism – Kabbalah – will help us survive. That’s because Kabbalah draws the Upper Light on a person, which created us and is the only thing capable of changing us.

Kabbalah will change man, as seen in practice, and will enable us to observe the law of brotherly community within the closed global system of mankind. This is why it is natural for people to be interested in Marx, but his theory cannot be realized in practice. To do this we need the Upper Force that corrects man, and only Kabbalah can provide it for us. I hope that people will soon realize this and will desire to actualize it the good way, instead of inflicting much more suffering on themselves.

Related Material:
Laitman.com Post: My Article on Ynetnews – A Kabbalistic Interpretation of the Economic Crisis
Laitman.com Post: The Remedy for the Global Crisis
Laitman.com Post: The Beginning of Enlightenment
Lesson on Baal HaSulam’s Article: “Exile and Redemption”